EP President rebukes Erdogan for threats against German MPs

European Parliament President Martin Schulz, a German Social Democrat, has written an open letter to Erdogan, saying differences of opinion among elected officials should not prompt allegations of terrorist sympathies.

“Such an act constitutes a complete breach of a taboo, which I condemn as strongly as possible,” Schulz wrote. “As the president of a multi-national, multi-ethnic and multi-faith parliament, allow me to make the following point: MPs’ freedom to carry out their mandate as they see fit is a fundamental pillar of our European democracies.”

Turkey is one of several countries recognized as a candidate for potential EU membership one day. Schulz sought to defend both German MPs and those in Turkey opposed to Erdogan’s policies.

“A string of the German Bundestag MPs you have personally attacked, but also Turkish parliamentarians affected by measures which you support, are amongst longstanding colleagues of mine, some of them are very close to me personally,” Schulz said. “I feel obliged to protect these colleagues wherever I can.”

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